chatgpt. Direct Instagram booking. Internet. Being a travel agent in the “era of instant gratification” is very different from their roles before the World Wide Web. Travel agents negotiate and buy rooms or create custom-made packages for clients through tour operators such as Thomas Cook. Then online travel agencies – such as Booking.com – changed everything.
In 20 years, the entire booking and sales model for travel agents has changed dramatically – especially post COVID – and with technology progressing at lightning speed, agents have to adapt quickly.
Automation and innovation are not only leading the way forward in tourism, but they are also driving the future of the industry.
Here are three ways automation and technological innovation continue to transform travel and how you can adjust and integrate future technology to work successfully with customers.
More automation tools make your life easier
Start-ups and innovative companies are regularly providing easy and convenient tools, whether ticket issuing or daily calendar management, that help you in your day to day.
Take for example the technology tools being made available to travel agents, such as Expedia Access or Booking.com’s travel agent platform, and how Saber has helped automate post-booking processes for travel agents to help increase revenue. Partnered with Trava to do this. Traditional travel agencies need to invest time in learning which tools work best, and they need to be flexible as more tools will surely be launched in the next few years, especially generative artificial intelligence.
Automation tools work in your favor – in fact, at the recent Google I/O conference, the tech giant announced Generative AI upgrades to its platforms, including Google Search. The new search with AI, known as Search Generative Experience (SGE), will include AI-powered snapshots for everyday queries, shopping and other areas useful to travel agents.
ChatGPT will make you pivot – but you can control it
Speaking of generative AI, ChatGPT has had a significant impact on travel, especially with the emergence and growth of AI-powered booking platforms. However, one thing ChatGPT does not have is heart. Many customers value the human connection.
ChatGPT, or any AI for that matter, has not infringed on the most intimate aspect of travel planning which requires customizing the arrangements, firsthand experience and your vast knowledge and expertise at the destination. While chatbots and virtual assistants can answer basic questions and remain active 24/7 with ease, hosts and travel agents can leverage human connections for more complex arrangements.
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Travel agents can use ChatGPT to their advantage by leveraging essential machine learning data to support customers and travel suppliers, such as algorithms for the best time to book flights on specific dates, current and future travel Analyzing patterns and trends as well as passenger interests and preferences based on their social media activity (including forecasting trending destinations).
For example, ChatGPT customizes recommendations based on a traveler’s preferences as well as real-time data (distance of attractions from hotel during rush hour, inclement weather, etc.), helping you craft an unforgettable itinerary. can help. You can also use ChatGPT to write customized emails, and travel agent AI, such as Shutterstock, which uses AI to optimize image searches or market key destinations for your business. uses.
Finally, one of the most attractive benefits of ChatGPT or AI for hosts and hoteliers is the ability to streamline booking processes and above all handle basic inquiries and automate tasks that save you time, such as quick response to customers.
Although ChatGPT can’t replicate the wonderful experience of staying at an amazing boutique hotel like Kilmartin Castle, it’s here to stay. And it may tell you that the property is part of a collection of unique, remarkable and luxury independent properties, or that the property was ranked fourth in The New York Times’ “52 Places to Move in 2023,” or that the young owners are exceptionally well off. Sociable and loves pets.
The human touch and amazing, personalized service that many travelers love can be integrated with ChatGPT to provide the best combination of facts, knowledge, convenience and empathy.
Prepare to be immersed in virtual and augmented reality
The journey into the Metaverse will open many doors and will determine how we interact with others. Virtual and augmented reality provide immersive travel experiences that will influence the way travelers book vacations in the future.
Travel agents and hosts can benefit immensely from this. It is one thing to paint a picture with words; Immersing the customer in a selection of destinations through virtual and augmented reality can help seal the deal. These types of experiences help travelers make decisions faster instead of “thinking about it,” resulting in faster bookings.
Both augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies can be used to simulate a range of travel experiences, from exploring an exotic island to stunning, up-close encounters with animals on safari or ancient sites. Encounters included. The keyword for these technologies is “immersive”. In the 90s, photos and short videos were enough to compel a visitor. Now, these new technologies can virtually transport a visitor to a hotel, restaurant, tour, attraction or destination. The technology is also fairly new; It is an experience in itself.
Many hosts and travel agents already use VR to promote destinations such as Travel World VR using 360-degree videos of hotels, cruises, resorts and overseas tours. And many businesses, such as the British Museum, also use VR and AR to provide virtual tours of their exhibits. Are there customers wondering what it’s like to fly business class on KLM? They have a virtual tour of all their jets. Discover Los Angeles, the convention and visitors bureau of Los Angeles, offers virtual site inspections, which is helpful not only for travelers but for travel agents as well. And in May, Singapore Tourism partnered with Google to launch two new immersive augmented reality experiences around Singapore’s famous Merlion Park and the Victoria Theater and Concert Hall in its Visit Singapore app.
Today, many hosts such as Hocking Hills, with its portfolio of thousands of properties, including the famed Ridgemont Lodge at Bourbon Ridge Retreat, offer 3D tours of their establishments. As VR and AR technologies become more mainstream, it’s only a matter of time before we’ll all be able to put on our VR goggles and step straight into the room we’re booking. Obviously, this will add to the challenges of regulating and managing labels and certifications to protect consumers from counterfeit products.